Planck's Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB) Map

Planck_planck13-002a_1024

planck_planck13-002a April 16th, 2013

Credit: ESA and the Planck Collaboration

This map shows the oldest light in our universe, as detected with the greatest precision yet by the Planck mission. The ancient light, called the cosmic microwave background, or CMB, was imprinted on the sky when the universe was 370,000 years old. It shows tiny temperature fluctuations that correspond to regions of slightly different densities, representing the seeds of all future structure: the stars and galaxies of today.

By analyzing the light patterns in this map, scientists are fine tuning what we know about the universe, including its origins, fate and basic components.

This map was constructed from an analysis of observations of the sky at wavelengths of light spanning 850 microns to 1 cm (353 GHz to 30 GHz). Additional observations spanning 350 to 550 microns (857 to 545 GHz) helped characterize foreground dust in the Milky Way, which was removed from the final CMB data shown here.

This view of the data is in an equirectangular projection suitable for projection onto a sphere, and is useful for full-dome presentations. The projection is in galactic coordinates with the galactic plane running horizontally along the midpoint of the image. Note that most graphics software will map images to the outside of a sphere; since this is the inside projection looking outwards the image should be flipped horizontally when used with such software.

Planck is a European Space Agency mission, with significant participation from NASA. NASA's Planck Project Office is based at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. JPL contributed mission-enabling technology for both of Planck's science instruments. European, Canadian and U.S. Planck scientists work together to analyze the Planck data.

<a href="http://planck.ipac.caltech.edu/system/media_files/binaries/8/original/Planck-CMB-SMICA.tif?1366073389"><strong>Download layered CMB Map</strong></a>

Image Source: /image/planck/planck13-002a

Curator: NASA Planck Science Center, Pasadena, CA, USA

Image Use Policy: Public Domain

Image Details

Image Type
Observation
Object Name
Cosmic Microwave Background CMB
Subject - Distant Universe
Cosmology » Morphology » Cosmic Background

Distance

Universescale3
13,799,620,000 light years
Planck_planck13-002a_128
 

Position Details

Position (GAL)
RA = 0h 0m 0.0s
DEC = 0° 0’ 0.0”
Orientation
North is up
Field of View
360.0 x 180.0 degrees
Constellation
Pisces

Color Mapping

  Telescope Spectral Band Wavelength
Arrow_left_pseudocolor Planck (LFI-HFI) Millimeter 1000.0 µm
This Planck CMB map was synthesized from observations spanning wavelengths of 850 microns to 1 cm.
Spectrum_ir1
Arrow_top_pseudocolor
Planck_planck13-002a_1280
×
ID
planck13-002a
Subject Category
D.6.1.3  
Subject Name
Cosmic Microwave Background, CMB
Credits
ESA and the Planck Collaboration
Lightyears
13,799,620,000
Redshift
Reference Url
/image/planck/planck13-002a
Type
Observation
Image Quality
Good
Distance Notes
Distance corresponds to look-back time to the era of recombination
Facility
Planck
Instrument
LFI-HFI
Color Assignment
Pseudocolor
Band
Millimeter
Bandpass
Central Wavelength
1000000
Start Time
Integration Time
Dataset ID
Notes
T
Coordinate Frame
GAL
Equinox
Reference Value
0.00000000000, 0.00000000000
Reference Dimension
6400, 3200
Reference Pixel
3600.5, 1800.5
Scale
-0.05625, 0.05625
Rotation
0
Coordinate System Projection:
CAR
Quality
Full
FITS Header
Notes
Equirectangular projection suited for mapping onto a sphere. Note that if wrapped to the outside of a sphere, the image should be flipped horizontally to compensate for the outward looking sky perspective of the map.
Creator (Curator)
NASA Planck Science Center
URL
http://planck.ipac.caltech.edu
Name
Email
Telephone
Address
1200 E. California Blvd.
City
Pasadena
State/Province
CA
Postal Code
91125
Country
USA
Rights
Public Domain
Publisher
Publisher ID
planck
Resource ID
Resource URL
/image/planck/planck13-002a
Related Resources
Metadata Date
2018-01-19T01:58:49Z
Metadata Version
1.2
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Detailed color mapping information coming soon...

×
Universescalefull
13,799,620,000 light years